Dates with Oscar, the Bard make hers a Cinderella story

It’s been pretty magical,” Anne Hathaway says of a year that began with an Oscar nomination for “Rachel Getting Married,” leading to a seemingly impromptu duet with that ceremony’s host, Hugh Jackman, before wowing Central Park crowds in “Twelfth Night.” And it isn’t over yet.

Hathaway (the namesake of Mrs. Shakespeare) has constructed for herself an eclectic career that’s ranged from “Princess Diaries” to “Brokeback Mountain,” and she has, in some ways, defied the odds, simply by being as versatile as she is beautiful and talented.

Despite her swanlike demeanor, Hathaway says she makes things difficult for herself. “I had a conversation with someone the other day about something in my personal life and this person said, ‘You really picked the rockiest, most difficult way to go, didn’t you?’ ” Hathaway laughs. “And I said, ‘Yes, that’s the route I trust the most.’ Trial by fire: You wind up with more egg on your face if it doesn’t work, but you learn more if it does. And even if you wind up with egg on your face, you’re much wiser as a result.’”

There was a lot of imperiled egg involved in Hathaway’s foray into “Twelfth Night.” Making the leap from screen to stage can be fraught with peril; resistance — among co-workers, critics and even audiences — can be venomous. She was stepping up her game, tackling the Bard, “and doing it in drag,” she adds, referring to her role as the cross-dressing Viola.

“Luckily for me,” she says, “I’ve encountered resistance at every stage, both personally and professionally, so this is something I’ve come to be used to. To be honest, I get frightened when it’s not there.”

She’s now in the midst of shooting “Valentine’s Day” directed by Garry Marshall and prepping for “Love and Other Drugs,” which she describes as “a love story set against the background of the pharmaceutical industry and American health-care system. Honestly, when I chose to do it, I said, ‘I love it, but is anyone going to care?’ Now it’s like, ‘Can we shoot it fast enough?’ ”

IN A NUTSHELL

Job title: Actress

Mentors: Suzan Bymel, Jonathan Demme

Career mantra: “Do better tomorrow.”

Leisure pursuits: “Dancing with my friends, learning something new, karaoke, reading, crossword puzzles, horseback riding.”

Philanthropic passions: Service Nation, St. Jude’s, Lollipop

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